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Poster: k-otic Date: Apr 20, 2009 2:09am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

Plan Nine (PD) ?!?
are you talking about Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959)

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Poster: Video-Cellar Date: Apr 20, 2009 2:15am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

Yes. It was registered (film, screenplay and trailer, in 1981). Williams later attempted to secure renewal which were filed but do not correspond to the original registrations and are legally invalid.

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Poster: billbarstad Date: Jan 2, 2010 3:25pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

I'm planning to upload Plan 9 from Outer Space. I'd appreciate it if you would say how the copyright renewal does not correspond to the original registration so I can include this information when I post the movie, something like what you did with Cat-Women of the Moon. Don't know if it will make a difference if (when) IA gets a takedown notice, but I think it's worth a shot. Yes, I like to run the fool's errand occasionally.

I'd post Jail Bait too, but I can't find my copy.

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Poster: Video-Cellar Date: Jan 3, 2010 11:36pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

I think this pretty much sums up the situation for "Plan 9"



This film is in the public domain. “Grave Robbers From Outer Space” was originally published in the USA in 1959. The film was not immediately registered for copyright. It was registered by it's producer “Reynold's Pictures Inc” in 1981 (PA0000102338).
The film's copyright was renewed in 1986 by Wade Williams 3 (RE0000279707). In 1981, Williams lodged a quitclaim from Kathy Wood (Edward D Wood Jr's second wife [1956-his death] and heir. USCO doc. no. V1831P045) and separate quitclaims of interest from Norma McCarty (Edward D Wood's first wife - falsely listed on the filing as “Mrs. Edward D. Wood, Jr., successor of all rights to the Estate of Edward D. Wood, Jr.”, which she was not, as their marriage had been annulled) - and Reynolds Pictures, Inc.
This renewal was legally invalid for these reasons:
1)the registration and renewals were lodged providing the incorrect title on screen, date-in-notice and publication date for the original publication.
2)In order for a successor in interest to renew a copyright they have to demonstrate that they own the copyright through a valid transfer of rights from the party owning the copyright at or immediately before the renewal window. None of the parties Mr Williams sought quitclaims from were valid owners of copyright immediately prior to the renewal window. Valid copyright successors for this film “James Flocker Enterprises Inc” “Gold Key Video” Vidtronics Inc” and “Medallion Pictures”, all companies who are successors in the chain of ownership post registration, are not present in Williams' quitclaims. Williams has, instead, provided the the USCO with a series of meaningless assignments from parties which no longer held any copyright interest in the work in order to demonstrate “ownership” of the intellectual property in the film.
The screenplay was further registered as an unpublished work in 1989 (Pau001211635). This again is rendered legally invalid by the mere fact that large portions of the screenplay were previously published as part of the registered motion picture for which no valid copyright renewal exists.

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Poster: mrmccarty Date: Nov 16, 2012 8:05pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

My mother is Norma E. McCarty. She and my step-father, Ed, were married until the day he died, no annulment.
I don't know who told you they had an annulment, but I'm very sure whoever it was, didn't have any proof of an annulment, because there isn't any. However, you can get a copy of their Marriage Certificate.
Please stop saying they had an annulment. They both told me they were never divorced either.
Thank you,
Michael McCarty

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Poster: Fact_Checker Date: May 4, 2011 6:21pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME (Plan 9 From Outer Space copyright)

I have no argument with point #1 and that copyright registration of the screenplay does not mean anything because "large portions of the screenplay were previously published as part of the registered motion picture" (thus making copyright protection contingent upon copyright in the film itself).

However, it may be incorrect to decide that the renewal claimant lacked eligibility because "Valid copyright successors for this film 'James Flocker Enterprises Inc' 'Gold Key Video' 'Vidtronics Inc' and 'Medallion Pictures', all companies who are successors in the chain of ownership post registration, are not present in Williams' quitclaims."

The above companies may well have acquired the remainder of the first-term rights that began with J. Edward Reynolds, but Reynolds's rights may have not extended into the second term. "Plan 9" is in an unusual ownership situation because the project originated with Edward D. Wood Jr. independent of any company or financier, and only later did Reynolds come into the picture, seemingly as a backer rather than as someone to whom Wood had a work-for-hire arrangement. Under the 1909 Copyright Act, this would give Wood ownership of copyright after the first term, and owing to Wood's death prior to the end of the first term, any contractual term he signed forfeiting the second term would be void.

There are precedents supporting this interpretation. Were it the case that D.W. Griffith's part in spearheading "The Birth of a Nation" were such that he would own the second-term copyright, then it would be necessary that he had renewed the 1915 copyright in 1942-43. Instead, the distributor (which had not even been in existence at the time of production) renewed. A court determined that Epoch (the company) could not show it had been eligible to renew, so the renewal copyright was voided.

http://chart.copyrightdata.com/c07B.html#s142

The "Plan 9" renewal seems to be the reverse: the successor to the "auteur" (as it were) filed renewal, the distributors did not. I don't know whether Wade Williams has valid claims in this regard, nor do I know what contractual and financial arrangements were made between Wood and Reynolds (Could it have been work for hire? Did Reynolds qualify to be copyright claimant for all terms?), but I see there being grounds for interpreting the copyright status of this film in the way that I describe above.

The provisions of the 1909 Copyright Act which gave authors a "second chance" to sell rights when something they created still had a market 28 years after first publication -- which came about because Congress heeded Mark Twain's testimony about how he had earned little from "Innocents Abroad" in its first term -- usually impacted only songs and novels, not movies, but "Plan 9" was not a studio in-house movie. More cases:

http://chart.copyrightdata.com/c07B.html

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Poster: Video-Cellar Date: May 7, 2011 2:43am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME (Plan 9 From Outer Space copyright)

The registration listed the authorship as "Reynold Pictures Inc., employer for hire". The work was registered as a work for hire.

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Poster: Kevin VandeWettering Date: Sep 16, 2015 2:13am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME (Plan 9 From Outer Space copyright)

This is a list of films Williams sent me an email about:

PLAN NINE
GALAXY INVADER
ROCKETSHIP XM
SPACE PATROL
TOM CORBETT-SPACE CADET
BRIDE OF THE MONSTER
GLEN OR GLENDA
NIGHT OF THE GHOULS
SINISTER URGE
TALES OF TOMORROW

I didn't have all of these on my blog and I think some of his registrations are a little unusual and untimely. I looked into this and I can't see any profit in arguing with the guy. His TV show registrations are unusual, but probably legal.

Two more things that came to my attention that aren't public domain.

THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW LOST EPISODES. The "lost" episodes are derivative work.

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCOURTS-txnd-3_06-cv-00588/pdf/USCOURTS-txnd-3_06-cv-00588-0.pdf

Which means some other shows. Dick Van Dyke for example, that aren't public domain either.

In order for a show with recurring characters to be public domain, episode 1 needs to be public domain.

So I'm gonna respect Wade Williams claims and figure out what other TV shows I have to take off my PD list.

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Poster: Kevin VandeWettering Date: Sep 16, 2015 4:21am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME (Plan 9 From Outer Space copyright)

One more thing that might be useful to you copyright searchers that I never thought about as it is unusual. I missed the Tales of Tomorrow copyright because I was looking for original registration and renewal which would have to have been 1980 and 1981. Williams filed fresh copyrights in 1985 claiming a publication date of 1981 for works created in 1952 and 1953.

These shows may have been published in 1952, but in order to be published for the purposes of copyright they had to be sold, not just syndicated. Williams has a legal theory of how he owns the TV shows. That they weren't published for the purpose of copyright until 1981 when he did it. That is not a completely unreasonable position.



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Poster: billbarstad Date: Jan 5, 2010 3:04pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

It's up (http://www.archive.org/details/Plan_9_from_Outer_Space_1959). I did some minor editing on what you wrote. I hope that's OK, and I hope I didn't change the meaning. Thanks again!

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Poster: billbarstad Date: Jan 4, 2010 4:55am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

Thanks so much Shane! I'll quote and link to this post when I upload the movie. Hope it helps keep the film here.

Bill

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Poster: Fact_Checker Date: May 4, 2011 6:49pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME (Edward D. Wood Jr's "Jail Bait")

billbarstad wrote:
"I'd post Jail Bait too, but I can't find my copy."

Careful: the version of "Jail Bait" with the blackface skit is the film as released in 1952, which entered the public domain. There is a "director's cut" version put out in the 1990s that restored the sexy burlesque number which the original distributor cut out (leading said distributor to install the blackface skit so that there would be something would on stage during the theater scene). The restored footage is eligible for copyright protection because this scene was never published until recently, and thereby qualifies for our current relaxed copyright policies, which are not so stringent about registration and copyright notices, let alone renewal.

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Poster: cosmicola Date: Apr 20, 2009 2:31am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

I guess he challenged IA, and that's why Plan 9 was pulled some time ago? There are a few PD movies I've seen here in the past which later disappeared from the Archive. Most seemed to have some connection to WW.

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Poster: Video-Cellar Date: Apr 20, 2009 2:38am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: MORE TO COME

I think IA just does not question a takedown notice. If they receive one they take the film down. Williams' people are well known for sending erroneous cease and desist orders.